The Shepherd of the Hills

IMDb Rating 7 10 1,630


Downloaded 32,724 times
April 7, 2019



Beulah Bondi as Mrs. Sargent
Henry Brandon as Davis
John Wayne as Chris Morrell
Ward Bond as Motorcycle Cop at Jail
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
687.12 MB
23.976 fps
98 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.46 GB
23.976 fps
98 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by JohnHowardReid 10 / 10 / 10

The finest film ever made!

It's rare to come across a cult movie that I can not only unreservedly recommend but that I feel fully justifies its cult reputation. Of course, maybe the cultists like the movie for the wrong reasons. But with The Shepherd of the Hills it's hard to find wrong reasons. Everything about the picture is so right. The luminous performances: Wayne, perfectly cast, giving one of the best of his entire career; Carey, so winning and sympathetic, making the title role so memorable it will become a point of reference for the rest of your life; Marjorie Main, equally unforgettable as the blind woman who sees too much too quickly; Beulah Bondi, never more embittered or meaner-spirited as the real head of the Matthews clan; Marc Lawrence, giving the finest and certainly the most unusual study he ever attempted as the pathetically inarticulate Pete. So many others - Ward Bond who has the realistic fight with Wayne, Fuzzy Knight as the singer, Olin Howland as the squirrelling storekeeper... And all brilliantly directed by Henry Hathaway too. Henry, as I've said before, is the sort of director I most admire. For a start, he doesn't direct actors. He expects them to know their craft and is equally impatient with amateurs and hams. Secondly he's a specialist in action and outdoors work. He once said that he always preferred location assignments because it took him well away from front office interference. Hathaway ran a tight unit, turning out the movies he wanted to make in the way he wanted to make them. He had an eye for natural scenery, and could see its dramatic and story possibilities. Weeping Meadow is just that. The hill country in Shepherd is both brutal and supremely picturesque. Of course it's the script's large array of bizarre, vividly realized characters, plus the unusual setting in which they move, and the age-old conflicts which they generate (particularly Youth against Age, Idealism against tainted or even repented Experience, Freedom and/or Libertarianism against Authority) which has propelled The Shepherd of the Hills into such firm favoritism with present-day cultists. The movie of course has these qualities. But it has something else which is not so popular to-day and which indeed, both when the novel was written back in 1907 and throughout its various film versions, was the main reason for its existence. It has a spirituality, a supernatural element, a discussion of the Two Ways, a depiction of the classic struggle between good and evil, and the power of Light to overcome Darkness.

Reviewed by smatysia 8 / 10 / 10

An OK film, no more

Not really what you'd consider a "John Wayne movie" inasmuch as his character is important, but not dominant. This film is set in, I suppose, the Ozarks, in a not completely specified time. There is mention of telephones in the cities, but no sighting or mention of automobiles and no electricity out there in the boonies. I suppose it could be anywhere from 1885 to 1910. Wayne plays a character other than "himself" which he is often accused of doing nothing but. Bettie Field plays a love interest for him. Her character is never seen wearing shoes. Harry Carey steals the show, as the stranger from the city. Every one used what they thought were hillbilly accents and verbiage, but notably without seeming very condescending about it. Overall, it is an OK film, no more.

Reviewed by weezeralfalfa 8 / 10 / 10

Tale of the loathsome mind(sorry)

Amazingly for 1941, shot in Technicolor, in the Arkansas Ozarks and the Big Bear Lake, CA area. Much reminds me of the first outdoors movie shot in 3-strip Technicolor: "Trail of the Lonesome Pine"(from which my review title is derived), which was shot mostly at Big Bear Lake. Both films were directed by Henry Hathaway. John Wayne's character in the present film is roughly analogous to Henry Fonda's role in the earlier film, which is situated in the Virginia Appalachians, not the Ozarks, as is the present film. Also, Harry Carey's character, Dan, is analogous to Fred McMurray's character in the prior film, as the good Samaritan outsider who sets the mountain folk on the right track, away from their feuding and moonshine stills. Betty Field is the equivalent of Sylvia Sydney, as the barefoot ingénue, ripe for marriage to the right fella. Betty comes across as the most talented actor for this type of picture. Mostly, it plays at a very leisurely pace. However, there are a number of dramatic incidents: 1)Wayne and Ward Bond grapple over Bond pushing brain-damaged Pete to the ground, while sheep spill out of the holding pen which the fighters damaged. 2)Aunt Mollie(Beulah Bondi), as Wayne's surrogate mother, accidentally kills her son Pete while they were grappling over a loaded rifle. 3)Aunt Mollie sets her house on fire, incinerating herself, and cremating Pete's body, leaving her husband, played by James Barton, homeless. 4)The standoff, with firearms, between Wayne and Dan, whom Wayne just learned is his long lost father, whom he has vowed he will kill if ever he meets him. Dan says he will shoot Wayne, if Wayne ever comes to kill him, because he'd rather have Wayne dead than sent to prison for killing him.(See the film for the result. 5)Dan paying for eye surgery that allows Grandma Becky to see, for the first time. Don't say what her problem was, but a good guess might be congenital cataracts, which can be removed and replaced by an artificial lens. Besides being slow paced, another negative is that the talking is sometimes too low or indistinct for me to comprehend what they are saying. Otherwise, it's a pretty good drama. Presently available at YouTube

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